I was treated to a nice surprise shortly after getting home from work last night… my Google Wave invitation arrived in my personal email inbox at exactly 7:49pm.
I applied for my beta invite the very first day Google started accepting requests, and reapplied several more times over the last few months. Like so many other techies, I waited and waited for Google to finally start sending out those invitations today. When I began to notice a few Twitter “friends” comment today that they’d already received their invitations, and I still had not received mine by the time I left work, I assumed I just didn’t make Google’s first cut of 100,000 invites.
So I was thrilled to get that 7:49pm email!
What exactly is Google Wave?
My husband asked me that very question tonight when I proudly informed him that I’d bestowed upon him 1 of my 7 precious invitation nominations (he’d heard of Wave before, he’s just not quite as much of a techie geek as I am). I couldn’t answer his question, except to mimic the mantra that Google Wave is supposed to revolutionize web-based communications. I then reemphasized the fact that he should feel privileged by the possibility that he’ll get to be an early Waver (I quickly distributed most of my 6 remaining invites to techie friends, coworkers and colleagues).
But that made me realize that although I’d spent so much time waiting to give Wave a try, and had participated in excited online chatter about Wave, I still really don’t have much of a clue about how to explain Google Wave to “normal” people. Sure, it’s supposed to combine collaborative community platforms such as email, instant messaging, social networking, multimedia content, wikis, etc. To a full blow social web nut like me, that sounds like nirvana. But will “regular” people want to use Wave, and give up their traditional social platforms? What’s the lure beyond something new and shiny?
I guess that means I have a bit of exploring to do.
I do intend to blog about my discoveries (despite being so lax with blogging the last couple months due to the new hectic job and the stressful wedding). But in the mean time, if you want to get more acquainted with Google Wave, check out Mashable’s guide to Google Wave, and well as this handy short little video from Google.
The Wave Space
Google Wave users are welcomed to their Wave space by Dr. Wave, the product manager for Google Wave, who helps us new Wave users learn to navigate around our Wave panels.
Following is a screen grab of my very own Google Wave setup. There’s not much there yet — I haven’t started any new Waves (threaded conversations) — because none of my real life friends or colleagues are on Wave yet.
Google Wave is divided up into four default panels:
- Top-Left Corner: the navigation panel
- Bottom-Left Corner: the contacts panel
- Middle: The inbox panel, where I can view threads of incoming Waves as well as Waves that I’ve created.
- Left: The Wave panel, an open active conversation thread.
I am very excited to be able to give Wave an early try, but I am anxious to connect and test it out with other folks who are on Wave as well. If you are already on Wave, please feel free to connect with me via my old (pre-married) Google username: colleenrobledo at gmail dot com.